Following on the heels of retail giants such as Toys “R” Us, Gymboree and Bed Bath & Beyond, Party City recently announced closures for the upcoming year. While the national chain isn’t shuttering all locations (far from it), the company has plans to close 45 stores permanently.

Between bday bashes, weddings, grad gatherings and all the other festivities you attend regularly, it’s hard to comprehend the idea of a top party retailer shutting down. But like other brick and mortars have found, retail isn’t an easy game to conquer in the age of the internet—even for Party City.

According to Chief Executive Office, James M. Harrison, in a press statement, “Each year, Party City typically closes 10-15 stores as a part of our prudent network optimization process and in response to ongoing consumer, market and economic changes that naturally arise in the business.” Harrison also added, “This year, after careful consideration and evaluation of our store fleet, we’ve made the decision to close more stores than usual in order to help optimize our market level performance, focus on the most profitable locations and improve the overall health of our store portfolio.”

Despite rumors of helium shortage-related closures, Harrison did note, “Most importantly, we have signed a letter of agreement for a new source of helium which, subject to final execution of a definitive contract, would provide for additional quantities of helium beginning this summer and continuing for the next 2.5 years.  We believe this new source should substantially eliminate the shortfall we are experiencing at current allocation rates and improve our ability to return to a normal level of latex and metallic balloon sales.”

How do you know if your Party City will close in 2019? The retailer is still yet to release the locations of the 45 stores.

—Erica Loop

Featured photo: Gaelle Marcell via Unsplash 



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